Missing Persuasion: Marriott Mobile App

Written by Guido Jansen in
October 2011

So here' s a great example of how to get people NOT to do something...

 I'm staying at the Marriott hotel in San Francisco, and as a key to your room, you get a card (as shown to the right). Apparently the Marriott hotel has a Mobile app and thought that it would be a great way to bring this to the attention of everyone staying at the hotel. Since everyone has a room key, this would be a great place to get this under the attention of the visitors. So far, nothing wrong with the idea. But then came the execution... The card (click on the image for a larger version) tells me there is a new app and that it's available on iPhone, Blackberry and Android and that the app is easy to receive through sending a text message, scanning the QR code or visiting the website.

But WHY?

I have no idea WHY I should do this! I don't know the app, don' t know how it would benefit me and how it would improve my stay at the hotel. Scanning the code or going to the website isn't a complicated thing to do, so you don' t have to be super-persuasive to get people motivated to do so. But you have to give me something! Can I order roomservice with it? Can I see my purchases? Can I see what events are in the hotel or opening times of the bar and swimming pool? Is there a city guide? These are the things I can come up with when I give it some thought, but most people won't do that. Most will take a look and if it has nothing interesting on it they just won't look at it again. Just a guess, but I bet the conversion (number of visitors in the hotels divided by the number of people sending the sms or visiting the link) is VERY low. In general I see enough advertisements or other copy that could be more persuasive. Probably everything can be, there's always something left to improve. But what strikes me in this example, is that there is not even the slightest attempt to persuade me to download the app. 

Nothing

PS: If you do want to know what the app does I guess you'll just have to follow the instruction on the card. Don't ask me though, despite the blogpost I'm still not tempted to give it a try...

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